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Mind's Eye Theatre martial arts system

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MA system for OWOD MET
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  1 | Page   Dark Rhodes / Sept of the Hidden Flame Martial Arts System Redux  Table of Contents Introduction ....................................................... 1 Administrative Rules .......................................... 2 General Concepts ............................................... 2 Training .............................................................. 3 Martial Arts in Combat ....................................... 4 Martial Arts Styles .............................................. 5 Hand to Hand Styles ....................................... 5 Aikido ......................................................... 6 Bai He Quan (White Crane style Kung Fu) . 6 Capoeria ..................................................... 7 Ch'a Ch'uan ................................................ 7 Fu Jow Pai (Black Tiger Kung Fu) ................ 7 Hwa Rang Do .............................................. 8 Houquan (Monkey style kung fu) ............... 8 Jeet Kune Do .............................................. 9 Jiujutsu ....................................................... 9 Karate ....................................................... 10 Krav Maga ................................................ 10 Muay Thai................................................. 11 Ninjutsu .................................................... 11 Sambo ...................................................... 12 Savate ....................................................... 12 Tae Kwon Do ............................................ 13 Taijiquan .................................................. 13 Xingyiquan (Hsing I Chuan) ...................... 14 Yingzhaoquan (Eagle Claw kung fu) ......... 14 Zuijiuquan (Drunken Kung-fu) ................. 15 Techniques ................................................... 15 Utility Techniques .................................... 16 Defensive Techniques .............................. 17 Offensive Techniques .............................. 19 General Weapon Style Techniques .......... 21 Focused Weapon Styles ............................... 23 Chi Hsuan Men (White Jade Fan)............. 23 Iskakku ..................................................... 24 Kenjutsu ................................................... 25 Klingetanzen ............................................ 26 Escrima ..................................................... 28 Klaviskar ................................................... 30 Special Styles ............................................... 31 Do ............................................................. 31 Afterword ........................................................ 32 Change Log ...................................................... 32 Introduction  As written, the martial arts system in Laws of the East is imbalanced, giving too great an advantage to the user, and doing it in such a way that the main purpose of including Martial Arts in the MET system  –  dramatic flavor  –  is lost. The current system of adding a (potentially) large number of traits to most of a combatant’s challenges is unbalancing, because it allows a huge trait advantage that is far  2 | Page   beyond what almost any other circumstance can contribute. The weapon style martial arts essentially deny another character the use of their abilities, which while mechanically may work, is understandably troublesome to players. In order to bring the MET Martial Arts system more in line with the tabletop Martial Arts system, the following rules will be used. The aim of the system is to provide mechanical advantages that are very useful in some circumstances, while not providing a blanket benefit that is insurmountable compared to non-martial arts combat styles. This should be done in a way that enhances the drama of action scenes by lending flavor to a martial artist’s fighting style.    Administrative Rules Before going into the nature of the martial arts ability itself, there are a few administrative rules for martial arts that should be implemented across the board. 1) A character may not double up on combat abilities to gain a number of retests in combat beyond which he normally would be entitled. Put simply, you cannot purchase more than 5 total levels in armed combat abilities, and no more than 5 total levels in unarmed combat abilities. Of course, a character who can purchase level 6 abilities may purchase 6 total levels in each, etc. 2) Martial Arts require two experience per level, rather than one. 3) Martial Arts should always require either a teacher or extensive effort to learn. In addition, remaining in fighting form means that a dedicated martial artist must train extensively, cutting into his free time. See the ‘training’ section below for m ore details. 4) Published ‘martial arts’ systems such as Klaviskar (klaive dueling), Kailindo (Stargazer shapeshifting martial art) or Iskkaku (from the Child of Gaia tribebook) should be considered martial arts for the purposes of these rules. General Concepts While the division of Martial Arts into Hard, Soft, and Weapon styles as presented in Laws of the East made an attempt at making different martial arts distinctive, they unfortunately only generalize and sterilize the history, appearance, and flavor of each martial art. For example, both Capoeira and Muay Thai would be considered Hard martial arts, but nothing differentiates the fluid, circular Capoeira from the linear, lightning quick Muay Thai. Therefore, each style is learned as a separate ability, and the hard/soft distinction instead becomes a discussion about the philosophies of each style. To help differentiate one style from another, a general list of techniques is provided. A hand-to-hand martial art should be given access to seven or eight of these techniques overall. With each level in the style a person learns, he gains access to one of those techniques listed for his style. Martial arts styles that are not included in this packet can easily be generated by choosing a number of techniques that fit the feel of that particular martial art. Just be sure that all people using a style have access to the same pool of techniques  –   one person’s Tae Kwon Do should be equal to another’s, at least in potential.  All of these styles are considered “unarmed” martial arts, even if the style teaches the use of weapons in conjunction with its unarmed base. Weapon styles remain somewhat problematic in that the division between “armed” and “unarmed”  combat that exists in MET abilities is not reflected in reality  –  most martial arts teach weapons as part and parcel of their makeup, unless the style itself is particularly focused on weapons (Iaido/Kendo or Escrima  3 | Page   for example) or is particularly advers e to their use (Karate or Sumo, etc). Therefore, two types of ‘armed’ martial arts exist. The first type of ‘armed’ martial arts simply reflects the use of weapons within unarmed styles. For each level taken, the character chooses a weapon family and can now use those weapons in conjunction with his unarmed style. Alternately, there are a small number of general techniques available that can be chosen after at least one weapon family is known to the martial artist. This will be referred to as ‘general’  weapon style. The second type of ‘armed’ martial arts reflects combat styles focused exclusively on a particular weapon or weapon family. Examples of this would be Kenjutsu ’s focus on swords, Iskakku’s focus on staves, and Escrima’s focus on fighting st icks and blades. These styles give access to much more specific techniques based around the weapon(s) being used, but become focused combat systems in and of themselves. These will be referred to as ‘focused’ weapon styles.    Training Learning martial arts should always be difficult. The quick pace of advancement in LARP means that this can be overlooked easily  –  in a system where you are for the most part married to real time, and where gaining your third dot of medicine means you are now as qualified as most general practitioners, it is difficult to balance realistic learning times with making players feel like their characters are stagnant. That being said, the nature of martial arts should bring training into the drama of the system, integrating it to add more flavor. If a character has a teacher, he should be able to learn fairly quickly. A suggestion is that training should take one month of dedicated effort per level to reach a new level of martial arts. So to move from Karate x3 to Karate x4 would take 4 months with a teacher. Obviously, this is much faster than in reality, but it at least gives a nod to the focus required for martial arts training. Double this time if a character does not have a teacher, but is instead working from written texts, training videos, or sufficient personal observation (note: habitually stalking master martial artists may be hazardous to your health). Double this time again (quadrupling it in total) if the character is trying to devise his own martial arts system from scratch.  Also note that true martial arts masters are rare. You can probably get away with going to your local kenpo school or the equivalent to learn a style at level 1, and perhaps hire a nationally acclaimed professional private tutor can teach level 2, but any more than that is going to require significant effort to track down a teacher. Even then, most of these teachers will not work only for money, and will require certain behavior and duties of their students. This is especially true of the more rare, exclusive and secretive styles (Chi Hsuan Men, Ninjutsu, Bai He Quan, etc). Purchasing the Mentor background once an appropriate individual has been located and persuaded to teach is recommended. Requiring supplemental ability purchases as a prerequisite to raising martial arts is encouraged, and should be required in situations where the character is trying to develop a new martial art. Meditation, Enigmas, Performance (Dance), Medicine, Dodge, Athletics, and any other ability the ST thinks is appropriate can be used to build a foundation for an increase in martial arts. The important thing is that it should mesh with the flavor of the style being learned  –  Meditation is mostly inappropriate for someone learning Savate, but Athletics would fit perfectly. Requiring general weapon martial arts in addition to an unarmed style may be appropriate as well.  4 | Page   Maintaining martial arts requires a great deal of focus. A character should expect to practice a average of half an hour per day for each level of martial arts in order to maintain his level of training. This does not have to be exact, but it should be used as a rough guideline  –  skipping a day of practice here and there won’t hurt too much as long as the character is diligent in trying to  make it up at a later date, but if he habitually skips training, his skills will deteriorate. An ST should notify the player if his character’s habits are nearing the point at which he will lose a level of martial arts. Note that this means a character who has reached level 5 in both an armed and unarmed style of martial arts is spending 35 hours per week practicing and maintaining his form. Being a true master is a full time job. To help mechanically reflect this, the amount of influence a character can maintain is reduced  –  each level of martial arts counts as 3 levels of influence when determining influence total (which normally cannot exceed the sum of a character’s traits).  If a character already has reached the cap on unarmed or armed combat abilities, STs should allow them to transfer abilities over the course of time. For example, a character with Melee 4 becomes interested in Kendo, and over the course of a few months finds a teacher and learns Kendo 1. This caps his armed combat abilities, so if he wishes to advance in Kendo to level 2, he can ‘trade in’ a level of Melee for a level of Kendo. It should still cost the full experience and training time  –  unlearning habits takes as much effort as learning new skills. Similarly, a character could gradually transfer from one style of martial arts to another in the same way.  Martial Arts in Combat There are a few universal rules that should be applied to the use of martial arts in combat situations. 1) Martial arts techniques may not be used in frenzy. Martial arts MAY be used as a retest while in frenzy, but it provides no benefits beyond the retest. For all intents and purposes, martial arts is no different from Brawl when one loses focus. 2) Only one martial art style may be used at a time. For example, a character with Tae Kwon Do x3 and Aikido x2 must choose which style he is utilizing  –   which ‘stance’ he is adopting - upon entering combat. The character may then only use techniques learned from that style of martial arts. If he wishes to use techniques from his other style, he must change his stance. This requires a full round of purely defensive action, utilizing no techniques, although the character may still move. Utilizing general weapon style along with an unarmed style is the only exception to this rule  –  general weapon styles are designed to harmonize with whatever hand to hand styles the user possesses. 3) Penalties inflicted by different martial arts techniques stack, but multiple applications of the same technique do not unless specified in the rules for that technique. 4) Spending martial arts for retests does not reduce one’s combat capabilities. When techniques refer to a character’s martial arts rating, alwa ys use the permanent rating. A character who spends all his martial arts may still use all his techniques, he will simply have no retests. In addition, there are a few core combat rules that need to be in place that form the foundation of some techniques. These are specifically NOT considered martial arts techniques, and could be performed with Brawl or Melee (when appropriate) just as easily.
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